UK moves to give legal certainty for smart contracts and cryptocurrencies

Today the UK Jurisdiction Taskforce of the Lawtech Delivery Panel has published a legal statement on the status of cryptoassets and smart contracts under English and Welsh law.

The landmark statement seeks to address legal uncertainty by recognising cryptoassets as tradeable property and smart contracts as enforceable agreements under English law.

Commenting on the paper, Gary Campkin, Managing Director, External Relations & Strategic Issues, TheCityUK, said,

Today’s legal statement clarifying the status of cryptoassets and smart contracts under UK law will give market participants and investors the certainty they need to innovate at the cutting edge of this new technology and approach to business relationships. This announcement is a prime example of why English law remains the preferred law of business around the world – used in over 40% of all global corporate arbitrations. The UK judiciary continues to support innovation while providing deep expertise and a rigorous and fair legal framework within which companies and investors can feel confident to operate.”

Notes to editors
[1] Tech Nation, ‘UK takes significant step in legal certainty for smart contracts and cryptocurrencies’, 18 November 2019
[2] UK Jurisdiction Taskforce, ‘Legal statement on cryptoassets and smart contracts’, 18 November 2019